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Transport / Bluemull Sound ferry service restricted after positive Covid test

The Bigga and the Geira. Photo: SIC

THE BLUEMULL Sound ferry service continues to be restricted after a crew member tested positive for Covid-19.

The service will run with a single vessel today (Monday) and tomorrow between 6am and 6pm.

Last week it dropped to a single vessel shuttle service due to “crewing issues”.

But a Shetland Islands Council spokesperson said a positive Covid test among the crew has affected staffing levels.

“There is disruption affecting the Fetlar route at the moment after a staff member tested positive for Covid-19, which has had an impact on crewing levels,” they said.

“On Monday 26th and Tuesday 27th July there will be a single vessel service on Bluemull Sound operating to a Saturday timetable between 0600hrs and 1800hrs.

“Bookings are suspended, but the crew will put in extra runs where they can when there is a build-up of traffic. From 1800hrs each night the normal weekday timetable will apply and bookings are available.”

North Isles councillor Ryan Thomson, who chairs the local authority’s transport committee, said he hoped normal service would resume on Wednesday.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight the hard work the crews have been doing keeping traffic moving over what has been a very busy period,” he said.

“They have been undertaking exceptional and professional work as ever under very testing circumstances, as have all the ferry operations team.

“My sincere thanks also to the understanding of the local communities who have, at times, had to change and amend their plans as their lifeline service comes under serious disruption once more.”

Thomson added that today is expected to be “extremely busy” as there are a number of trucks which need to get into Unst.

“Where possible we ask that people who can avoid travelling to Unst on Monday to change their travel plans to later in the day to help minimise traffic build up.”